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Living in 600 Square Feet: Designer Glenn Ban’s Refined East Hamptons Cottage

Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton

While perusing Laura Fenton’s captivating new book, The Little Book of Living Small, we were delighted to see designer Glenn Ban‘s compact East Hamptons home featured. Julie wrote about his Provincetown cottage a few years ago, and it remains one of our favorite beach houses we’ve covered on our site.

No surprise, Glenn’s Long Island hideaway, measuring just 600 square feet, is just as charming and refined. “I’ve always lived in smaller spaces. I connect with them. I like being able to see a home and its intentions,” he tells us, while conceding that “living small does force you to make choices, but it doesn’t mean you can’t be creative.”

No, it doesn’t. And this tidy little home is proof of that. Built in the early 1800s as just a single room, it was used mainly as an artists’ retreat. Though more rooms (two bedrooms, a kitchen, and a bathroom) were added in later years, it remains a humble, characterful abode—just the way Glenn prefers it.

Join us for a tour.

Photography by Weston Wells, from Laura Fenton’s The Little Book of Living Small.

Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Glenn transformed the enclosed porch into a mudroom/reading room. His affinity for a neutral palette, natural textures, and vintage and antique objects is clear from the get-go.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Glenn sold this house this past summer (he has since resettled in nearby Sag Harbor). His favorite room while living here, though, was this one: “It has wonderful natural light and allowed me to create a cozy spot to read or just drop towels after the beach.”
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: The Donald Judd-inspired plywood daybed was built for his old home but fit nicely here. Above it hangs a photograph of a Cape Cod beach by his friend Barry Balczun.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Another favorite feature: the wooden ceiling beams in the living room, the original “single room” from the 1800s.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: “I love vintage furniture and objects and include them not only in my home, but also my clients’ homes.  I think they offer a level of interest that’s necessary when developing an interior. My favorite resources are online auctions, 1stdibs, Chairish, Etsy, but I also love a good tag sale, vintage shop, or flea market.”
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Two modest-sized bedrooms, nearly identical in size are just off the main living area.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Each bedroom is big enough for just a bed and a couple pieces of small furniture.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: While collections of his favorite objects and art can be found in the main living areas, the sleeping quarters remain pleasingly serene and bare.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: A Saarinen table in the dining area is a modern counterpoint to antique wooden chairs.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: The kitchen, humble and practical, was left untouched.
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: Glenn brought in a large bookcase for more storage in the kitchen. “Play with scale,” he advises. “Sometimes people tend to buy furniture and objects that are too small. Take a risk. Bring in something a little off. Often that’s what a space needs.”
Glenn Bann House from Little Book of Living Small, by Laura Fenton
Above: The exterior is clad in classic cedar shingles.

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